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tv   Around the World  CNN  January 24, 2014 9:00am-10:01am PST

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men to post illicit photos of their exes. keeping it classes. thanks for watch, everybody. have a great weekend. "around the world" start right now. cnn has just learned that the pope intends to visit the united states. we have got some details from rome. and u.s. athletes headed to the winter olympics are warned not to wear team usa clothing outside the olympic venues. and a series of explosions in egypt killed six people and wounded dozens. we are live in cairo. welcome to "around the world" i'm suzanne malveaux. the pope intends to come to america. according to our sources now, the wheels are turning on plans for pope francis to visit the united states next year. john allen, our senior vatican analyst, is in rome right now, has this exclusive. john, this is a major announcement. the last time we actually saw a pope here in the united states was pope benedict, back in 2008.
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what are the details? what do you know? >> reporter: well, what we know, suzanne, this is all being phrased in the subjunctive. 2015 is a long time away. what we're being told by vatican officials on background is francis has expressed his desire, his intention, to come to the united states in late september of 2015 for a major vatican event that's called the world meeting of families that is scheduled for philadelphia, september 22 through 27. in 2015. and he is saying he would like to be there. and, of course, this would be his first visit to the united states as pope. this is a pope who has astronomically high approval ratings all around the world, including in the united states. december cnn poll found he's got an 88% approval rating among american catholics. so if indeed he does come to philadelphia in september 2015,
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we can imagine, suzanne, this would be a major happening on the east coast of the united states. >> i can see people now making their plans, putting that on their calendar. it seems kind of far away. is that typical, where there is a lot of planning that is required here to plan that far in advance for a typical pope trip? >> yeah, what will happen typically, suzanne, is that sort of tentative plans will be forged for the pope to go someplace. and people will begin doing the advance work. the vatican will not confirm a papal trip until usually shortly before it happens. for example, we know that pope francis is going to the holy land, that is, to israel, the palestinian territories and jordan in may. the pope himself has announced that he intends to go. but the vatican still is not -- is not officially issued a set of plans for that trip. because they're well aware that things can come up. so -- >> sure. >> so we're not going to get any
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official confirmation for quite some time. but in the meantime, the people who are trying to put events like this together need some indication of what the pope's intentions are, so they can begin doing the preliminary sort of work. and that's what we have now. a preliminary signal from francis that all things being equal, he would like to be there. and that in itself, of course, for people in the united states is big news. >> oh, yeah. what a scoop there, john. that's great. i know president obama is going to be visiting with the pope in march. he's actually going to be going over to the vatican there. but this is really amazing for those people who are looking forward to seeing him face-to-face here in the united states. mark your calendars. if nothing goes wrong, in september. john, thanks. appreciate it. now to a new warning. a caution for american athletes heading to the winter olympics. they're going to be told to avoid wearing official gear, even the team colors, outside of the olympic venues.
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so here's what you're seeing. you're looking at the uniforms that team usa is going to wear at the opening ceremony. pretty snazzy there. "wall street journal" says a memo now from the state department was sent to the u.s. olympic committee detailing the steps that athletes have to take and should take to stay safe in the games. it comes amid growing concern about security in russia. our nick paton walsh is joining us live from sochi. nick, you and i talk about this every day. the games beginning just two weeks from today. team usa essentially being told, they could be walking targets. i mean, this seems pretty serious. and it seems like it's something that they are taking every detail to task. >> reporter: you know, this is important, the "wall street journal" the u.s. olympic committee doesn't have any on the record comment about this, other than to say quite simply that they are always doing what they can to ensure the safety of
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the american team here. some of this advice comes -- seems to collide with what's being said by pentagon officials. warning perhaps not only about the potential for threats within the olympic arena here within the kind of ring of steel from 37,000 russian security officers. the more concern is softer targets to wander into sochi nearby or to head out. that's potentially where security may lapse, where things may get necessarily less safe. and we have been talking for a few days now about how this whole region has been for the past decade extraordinarily volatile. so unlikely that during the weeks these games last, we won't see any violence at all across the north caucasuses in southern russia. can this keep americans and other athletes safe within this tightly controlled zone, suzanne. >> and nick, real quick here,
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because i know we've got to go. one of the things -- those uniforms, they're pretty conspicuous, if you see an olympian wearing those uniforms outside the olympic venue. are they saying that tourists, people going there who want to show some team support wear red, white and blue, for instance, that's a bad idea, as well? they also could be targeted? >> reporter: suzanne, sorry, unfortunately, technical issue. i can't quite hear your question. the broader issue for americans here and advice they have been getting from the state department has been encouraging in some ways. been advising them to be sensible. warned about normal, order ohnary crime, and also throwing out the issue of the separatist leader here, running much of the insurgency way out in the east in dagestan in southern russia, that he has specifically made threats towards the games. they say the state department, they're not entirely clear if this is directed exactly at u.s. citizens. don't see any specific open threat at this point. but still, the major problem, suzanne, as you know, in the weeks ahead, we should be
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talking about sports, festivities. and the focus on security. simply is it safe enough to come here. american athletes and maybe their parents being advised by them to come and watch them compete. that's overshadowing that amazing spectacle behind me, $50 billion of kremlin money being poured in. people are simply not talking about what -- >> all right. >> reporter: turning russia -- >> yeah. it's very important point, nick. sorry, we need to let you go early. we're having some technical problems with you. but, of course, everybody trying to make sure that they take the proper steps to stay safe. and the families even of some of the u.s. olympians, what they're doing, they're not even attending the games in sochi, because they're so worried. they're concerned about the security there. others say, however, they refuse to let terror threats keep them away. here's one mom who spoke to cnn today. >> i don't think i'm apprehensi apprehensive. i think aware is a better word. you know, in this day and age,
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we have to be aware of everything that is going on around us. whether you're at walmart, another country -- i mean, really, it's just kind of the world we live in now. i want to say, i'm not going to allow terrorists to steal my joy. it's -- you know? our tickets are booked, and our hotel -- we need the deposit on yesterday. and we're going. and we're staying on the outside of the olympic village. so i've been reassured that the police presence and the military presence is going to be at an all-time high. >> it will be. the winter olympics starting on february 7th and ending on february 23rd. there is an estimated 15,000 americans expected to travel to sochi for the games. and don't look for nsa leaker edward snowden to return to the united states any time soon. because a russian lawmaker says snowden will be given extended asylum beyond the one year that expires next summer. so snowden himself says he wants
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to come back to the united states, but he can't, because he's afraid of being prosecuted. want to bring in our justice reporter, adam perez, covering the story for us. so talk about the timing here. why is this important that they're going to decide now to extend the asylum? >> reporter: i think there is a lot of speculation as to whether or not it's possible for the justice department and snowden to come to some kind of arrangement where perhaps some of the charges, very serious charges, that are -- that have been filed against him here in the united states, could be changed, perhaps, and allow him to come back. as you know, the president has now said that he's going to make some changes to the nsa programs as a result of all these disclosures. and so today in davos, switzerland, this world economic forum meeting, alexi pushcov, head of the foreign affairs committee, basically put to rest any question the russians has been involved in trying to push him out of russia, suzanne.
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>> we heard from snowden himself. this is an internet chat forum that happened yesterday. and he says returning to the united states i think is the best resolution for the government, the public and myself. but it's unfortunately not possible in the face of current whistle blower protection laws, which through a failure in law did not cover national security contractors like myself. then we also heard from the attorney general, eric holder, yesterday, also spelling out the conditions for snowden to come back. so here's how he put it. >> we've always indicated in the interaction we had in roan anoka, the notion of clemency was not something we were willing to consider. but as i said, were he to come back to the united states, enter a plea, we would engage with his lawyers. >> so evan, what kind of plea deal is the justice department entertaining, possibly? >> reporter: well, i think what the attorney general was trying to do there was trying to put the own news onus back on edward
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snowden. a lot of speculation, members of congress pushing for the justice department to try to perhaps find a deal. and i think the attorney general basically trying to put it back on snowden. that in order for him to even talk about a deal, snowden has to agree to come back, plead guilty, and therefore he's willing to then -- the attorney general is willing to then talk to snowden's lawyers about how to arrange a return. so i think what you're seeing there is perhaps the attorney general's effort to put this back on the shoulders of snowden rather than in the justice department's court. >> all right. thank you very much. evan perez, we appreciate your reporting. rough day here. you've got to watch this for u.s. stocks. the dow jones dropping around now 195 points. the nasdaq s&p 500 also taking a beating as investors dumped their stocks around the world. worries over an economic slow down oh in china are actually putting pressure on wall street
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in markets everywhere. european markets closed with losses as well today. here's more of what we're working on for "around the world." this young man says his scars prove it. look at that. he says that ukraine's police force, tortured him for protesting against the government. and cnn asked iran's foreign minister what he plans to do with two americans who are imprisoned there. hear what he had to say. and it's supposed to be a talk for peace in syria. but the two sides refusing to even meet face-to-face. going to take a look at why the u.n. had to act as a go-between in genervgeneva. [ male announcer ] the new new york is open. open to innovation. open to ambition. open to bold ideas. that's why new york has a new plan -- dozens of tax free zones all across the state. move here, expand here, or start a new business here
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talk about a lot of things here, because it's pretty rare to be inside of iran. so there are a lot of things you're dealing with there. first of all, he had a face-to-face with the iranian foreign minister, who told you in no uncertain terms, his government is not going to take apart of the nuclear program. how is it playing with the people who you actually talk to, speak with in iran? >> reporter: well, let me tell you, suzanne. we went to friday prayers today at the main mosque in central tehran, really the showcase friday prayers nationally, and we got a very warm welcome. my producer here with me, jen rizzo, when an iranian woman heard she was from america, came up and gave her a hug and kiss on the cheek. and when i spoke to iranians about this new diplomacy between the u.s. and iran, they told me they welcomed it. they see a chance that iran and the u.s. can be friends. but when it comes to the nuclear program, this is something in iran that whether you're a hard liner or a reformer, you support iran's nuclear program. you believe it's peaceful, and you believe it's iran's right. and i can tell you, at these
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friday prayers, politics is never far from the conversation when the presider mentioned iran's invitation to those talks in geneva regarding syria, and he mentioned how that invitation was rescinded, all of a sudden the crowd broke into those familiar death to america chants. and in my experience coming to iran more than ten times, i find there is more theater in these death to america rants. but what they do tell you, the emotions are still high. they're still bitter and it's going to take some time to build trust, to break this mistrust that's built up over really more than 30 years between our two countries. >> sure. and jim, i want you to talk about that. take us behind the scenes, if you will. because you have been to iran ten times, but most people really never get to see inside of that country, have no idea. do they separate the politics from the personal feelings about you as an american? i mean, give us a sense of flavor of what it's like to be
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there. >> reporter: they really do. and even in the most tense times between iran and the u.s., when i have come here, i always found that people give me a personal welcome. that doesn't mean that you're not spared lectures about how the u.s. has wronged iran, and even today, as we have this new diplomacy, iranians, for instance -- iran is suffering under economic sanctions and blame the u.s. for that. and iranians who support a more reformist government will say that these sanctions are punishing the people and not the government. so that's another place where politics comes into the conversation, and the emotions are still raw. >> and jim, of course, you're making news there, as well. you talked to the foreign minister, and you asked him about two americans who are locked up inside of iran. did he give you any sense of information about their fate? >> reporter: he did. and these are the two americans amir hekmati, a former u.s. soldier, accused of spying here.
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sayeed amadini. when i asked him about it, he said we have laws on our books for clemency. here's how he described them to me. >> well, they have, unfortunately, judgments. court judgments against them. of course, we have various clemency measures in iran that can be introduced. have been in the past. can be introduced again in these cases. but i cannot predict that, because that is something for the judiciary to decide, and the executive usually doesn't have much influence over what the judiciary decides. >> reporter: the foreign minister did say it's not his decision. that resides with the judiciary. but it is at least something of a sign of hope. and when i passed those comments on to the families of hekmati and abadini, they were
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happy to hear. they were desperate for any news, and that gave them a glimmer of hope for some positive change come ago head for these cases. >> jim sciutto, excellent reporting, as always. kind of a rare glimpse inside of iran. here are some of the other headlines making news around the world. dozens of elderly people are feared dead. this is following a tragic nursing home fire in quebec. at least five people lost their lives, but there are about 30 others still unaccounted for. firefighters face brutal cold as they battled the flames, making matters worse, even, because water from the fire hoses quickly froze into thick ice, possibly trapping victims inside. >> some people might have been away, some people might have been in the hospital. people might have been visiting and sleeping over. so now they get information to ascertain how many people are actually inside the building. >> reporter: all of us are hoping that it's fewer than 30.
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do you have any indication now that people were double or triple counted? >> it's hard to say. there will be some. like i said, 30 is a rough estimate. i think the final number would be in that area. >> that is so sad. about 20 people escaped when the fire broke out early yesterday. the cause has not yet been determined. and a ceasefire starts today in south sudan. government and rebel leaders have now signed a deal agreeing to freeze all military operations, stop attacking civilians and stop sexual abuse and torture. and open supply routes for humanitarian aid. thousands of people were killed, more than a half million displaced, after fighting erupted last month between troops loyal to the president and those backing the vice president that he sacked. and you have to wonder if french president, francois hollande, had any special confessions to get off his chest. he met with the pope, pope
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francis at the vatican. it was a private meeting, so we don't really know what they talked about or hollande's alleged affair with a french actress came up in their conversation. but the allegations have left in doubt the status of the president's long-time partner. now, her lawyer told a french newspaper that the two are working to clarify the status of their relationship. they're supposed to make a state visit to washington next month, but not clear if she is going to make the trip. deadly violence in egypt today from a series of bombings, including one outside police headquarters in cairo. we've got a live report, up next. [ male announcer ] if you can clear a crowd but not your nasal congestion, you may be muddling through allergies. try zyrtec-d®. powerful relief of nasal congestion and other allergy symptoms -- all in one pill. zyrtec-d®. at the pharmacy counter. and other allergy symptoms -- all in one pill. my dad has aor afib.brillation, he has the most common kind...
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get a queen-size sealy gel memory foam mattress for just $497. and get four years interest-free financing on the entire tempur-pedic cloud collection. [yawns] want to take you now to cairo, egypt. this is where a powerful truck bomb ripped off part of the facade of the police headquarters, killing at least four people, injuring dozens more. the violence comes just the day before the third anniversary of the popular uprising that toppled hose knee mubarak.
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first of all, give us details. i understand two explosions. >> reporter: maybe five, suzanne. what happened here in cairo today could be a game-changer when it comes to this political crisis, simply because cairo and this country hasn't seen anything like what happened today. at least four bomb explosions throughout the day, a fifth one reported within the past hour. we're working to confirm that. these were not random attacks targeting random locations. all of them going after police and security buildings, without question the biggest explosion taking place early in the morning, around 6:30 a.m. that's when a car bomb exploded in front of police headquarters, an eight-story building. the bomb powerful enough to shear off the facade and damage adjacent buildings, including the islamic museum of art. at least four people killed. scores injured in that explosion. several hours later, a second and a third explosion early this
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evening. had you a fourth explosion. and like we mentioned before, suzanne, a fifth explosion being reported. no one has claimed responsibility for these attacks. however, many egyptians that we met on the streets are quick to blame the muslim brotherhood. the muslim brotherhood for their part condemned the attacks as they have done with these previous attacks, suzanne. but a tumultuous time one day before the big celebration of the three-year anniversary of the 2011 revolution. >> and reza, real quick here. you bring up a good point. that is a very significant marker in egyptian history. do we expect there's going to be more violence, more protests, leading to tomorrow? >> it's hard to say. but if today was any indication of what tomorrow is going to bring, it's going to be a rough day and it drives home the fact that egypt is in the midst of a political crisis on the one hand, the military-backed interim government pushing forth with its transition. on the other hand, you have the
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supporters of the ousted president, mohamed morsi and supporters of the muslim brotherhood. and now you have what seems like a very intense insurgency that is building up. and it's capable of targeting high-profile locations, like the police quarters in the heart of the city. >> reza, please be safe. we'll be following this as we go into the anniversary tomorrow. we know that some of the world's richest and most influential people, they're now in davos, switzerland, trying to tackle big global issues. but a select handful of american mayors is also there too, thinking global, acting local. also international mayors, as well. what are they hoping to bring back to benefit their cities? we're going to talk to one mayor, coming up next. [ male announcer ] this is george. the day building a play set begins with a surprise twinge of back pain... and a choice. take up to 4 advil in a day or 2 aleve for all day relief. [ male announcer ] that's handy.
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time, to allow the candidate here essentially to dip into those general funds. give us a sense of why this is important. >> it's very important, and you've got to give the chairman of the republican party, reince priebus, a lot of credit. they did what they call their autopsy, their sort of postmortem a year ago, what went wrong, why did mitt romney lose to barack obama in 2012. they did a whole postmortem. one of the things they thought the whole republican contest, caucuses and primaries went on for way long, way too many debates. they wanted to concentrate all of that within a relatively short period of time. now they're going to have the first four contests in february. they'll wrap everything up by may. they'll get ready for the convention in june. so they won't be able to beat up on the front-runner, if you will, as much. and they're hoping that once there is a nominee at the end of june or the middle of june, whenever their convention is, then they'll be able to start using all that general election fund raising money to go after
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the democrats. so it's a significant development. and i give the republican party some credit for putting that together. that's what he said he wanted to do, and today he did it. >> yeah. absolutely. it's going to change the game, certainly the money game. one of the things that they are trying to do, of course, is address the issues concerning women, and it's been quite a debate. we have seen mike huckabee over the last 24 hours making quite a bit of news over some comments that he made. his argument against mandated birth control coverage. here's how he put it. >> the democrats want to insult the women of america by making them believe that they are helpless without uncle sugar coming and providing for them a prescription each month for birth control, because they cannot control their libido or their reproductive system without the help of the government, then so be it. >> all right. uncle sugar and libido, some of the things that certainly are trending when he made those comments. a lot of people debating whether or not that was very helpful. the rnc chair also weighed in, talking about watching your words. here's how he responded.
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>> but our example matters. i've said many times before, that the policies and principles of this party are sound. however, as we look to grow the ranks of our party, we must all be very conscience of tone and choice of words when we communicate those policies effectively. we should set the standard. we should set the standard for future rncs, and also set an example for other republicans. >> so wolf, he says it's tone. tone matters as much as the words do, as well. do the republicans you've been talking to, do they see there is a problem when it comes to being disciplined in the message? >> well, they know there is a problem, because they look at the results of the 2012 presidential election and barack obama did so much better with women voters than mitt romney did. they know they have a serious problem there. they're trying to reach out to
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not only women voters, but minorities, hispanics, african-americans. they're trying to reach out to young people. and reince priebus is 100% right. you've got to have a good tone. you've got to discuss these issues in a way that some of those groups that have been alienated from the republicans and national presidential contests might be more open to. and i think he's right on that. you've got to discuss it in ways that some of these -- some of these groups who have been disenchanted, let's say, by republicans, may be willing to come back. they've got a shot this year in 2014 to do really well in the midterm congressional elections. they probably willrey retain the majority in the house oh. they've got a shot oh of even taking the majority back in the senate. let's see how they do. but presidential cop contests are different. let's see what happens then. >> good to see you, wolf, as always. we are talking about a stunning figure. it is still the talk of the world economic forum in davos, switzerland. the charity group, oxfam found
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that 85 of the world's richest people contain the same amount of wealth as the poorest 3 billion people. amazing static. atlanta mayor one of the movers and shakers, talking about tackling that kind of inequality here. joining us live from davos. and mayor reed, first of all, you've been in six sessions already. is this what people are trying to address? have you heard people looking at that figure and going what the heck, how do we change this? >> there's no question about it. it has been a part of every conversation that i've been in. there's been a huge focus on youth unemployment, which also goes to that issue, suzanne. and really some of the leading business leaders in the world are focused on certainly the youth unemployment, which leads to income inequality. and we have 75 million young people between the ages of 18 and 30 years old, who are underemployed or unemployed.
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and we have had multiple detailed conversations led by atlanta's own mutar kent, in how the world should seek to address these things. i think it's been a good conversation. >> and mayor, you are one of about nine u.s. mayors invited to davos. always mayors from london, as well. if i have give us a sense of what you hope specifically to bring back to atlanta, the city of atlanta. what are people getting for their money, for this trip? >> well, first of all, you're having detailed-specific conversations about major problems facing cities. and suzanne, we're also making the case that cities are where the action is. in the united states, more than 70% of the gdp occurs in cities. and we're getting things done in cities. so what we have been saying to ceos around the world, that if you don't want to spend your whole life changing the world, you should start dealing
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directly with mayors more. that's been the case that i've made directly. the city of atlanta in terms of what i hope to bring back is one of 30 leading cities in the world for foreign direct investment. we're one of the ten leading cities in the united states for foreign direct investment. so this is the place for me to be, to continue to make the case that atlanta is where businesses should invest. because at the end of the day, i want to bring jobs back home. >> and atlanta, we should point out to the audience here, it's the world's -- home to the world's businessiest airport and one of the world's best-known brands, coca-cola, as well. you went with a coke executive here. are there things you're learning from other leaders around the world about what needs to happen to change the inequality, the imbalance that we see in terms of the poor and the rich? >> yes. the social fabric not only in the united states, but globally, is being put at risk, because of
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the high unemployment that you're seeing in europe, in the middle east, in africa and increasingly in the united states of america. and what i am hearing and seeing, both in the forums and in private dinner meetings, is that the world's wealthiest and most influential people are getting that. so the real question is, what are we going to do about it? how are we going to move from one, accepting the notion that we have got to put more people to work. certainly young people. we have teen unemployment in some parts of the world as high as 20%. 30%, 40%. we also have countries that are going to have majority youth populations, suzanne, where the young people aren't trained and ready to go to work. so we've got to be prepared to do something about that. that's been what we have been talking about. >> all right. and i know there's side bars. some celebrities floating around. have you happened to see mary j. blige or bono?
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>> no, i didn't see mary blige or bono. but i did see richard branson from virgin airlines. he was a pretty big celebrity the other night. and then -- so many people, i can't even start. >> all right. hobnobbing with the big ones. the movers and shakers. thank you, mayor reed, for your time, as always. >> all right. i'll be home soon. senator mark rubio in south korea today, the florida republican met u.s. and south korean troops at the dmz. he also spoke at a forum in seoul, where he said he wants to see the u.s. military presence increased in south korea. rubio pointed to concerns from unpredictable north korea, which he calls a rogue and murder rouse regime. also in the korean peninsula today, an olive branch extended from pyongyang. the north korean government sent a letter to south korea, promising to create an atmosphere in which families separated since the korean war might be reunited. that is significant.
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cautious south korean officials say they want to see action, not just words, from north korea. and street fighting in ukraine getting a little bit quieter today, thank goodness. because protesters are giving the politicians a chance to talk out a possible solution. but some people now say they have seen torture and horrific abuse from riot police. there is video to back up their claims. that up next.
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police in ukraine are telling protesters, if they clear out and go home, they will not be prosecuted. it is now quieter, but still a mess in kiev today. after many days of fighting between riot police and prote protesters who are angry at the government for making a trade deal with russia. the opposition wants the president of ukraine to resign and call early elections. today, something new. allegations that riot police are beating and torturing protesters. our diana magna is in kiev. >> reporter: the charred caucasus of police vehicles weirdly beautiful in these bitter temperatures. not long ago, this whole area was burning. now it is the site of a frozen
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sta standoff with the police here. we're hearing of some very real ugliness that took place behind police lines. this video posted on youtube must have been shot just meters up the road. a man stands naked, or not quite. he's been allowed to keep his shoes on. a policeman takes a photo. he's kicked as he gets into the van. ukraine's interior ministry has issued an apology for the behavior of those involved in this voluntary which has circulated widely on ukrainian media, investigating the incident. but the reports of abuse in police custody don't end there. this man says he was tortured after he was seized by riot police. they beat me on my legs and ankles, he says. they sprayed my whole body with pepper spray and made me lie
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naked and sing the national anthem. each of them beat me. his arm was broken, and he was stabbed in the thigh. after all this, he is remarkably composed for a boy of just 17. in an interview in davos with cnn's richard quest, ukraine's prime minister would not be drawn on this case. >> a 17-year-old ukrainian claims taking pictures of the protest, police detained him, broke his leg, stabbed him in the leg, removed his clothes, and badly beat him. now faces multiyears in prison, because of the new anti protest laws. are you prepared to deal with that side of the equation? >> translator: the law enforcement officers were given instructions and orders to act within the legislation and not to use any kind of weapon. they do not have firearms with them. and those reactions, which they
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have to take, when someone is trying, for example, to capture government buildings and institutions. all those measures are not just illogical to those used in all the european states. >> reporter: but these demonstrators are unlikely to be satisfied. as this young man prepares for a series of detention hearings to see whether he'll be jailed for taking part in these protests. diana magnay, cnn, kiev. a major move against the illegal ivory trade and the sauter of elephants for their tusks. hong kong now is planning to destroy about 28 tons of confiscated ivory. officials plan toin sin rate it within the next couple of years. most of it was seized as traffickers took it to mainland china. an animal welfare group says china accounts for about 70% of the ivory market. and syrian peace talks look set to fail, but now we are just
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getting word that government and rebel leaders will talk face-to-face. a live report from switzerland, straight ahead. i'm only in my 60's. i've got a nice long life ahead. big plans. so when i found out medicare doesn't pay all my medical expenses, i looked at my options. then i got a medicare supplement insurance plan. [ male announcer ] if you're eligible for medicare, you may know it only covers about 80% of your part b medical expenses. the rest is up to you. call now and find out about an aarp medicare supplement insurance plan, insured by unitedhealthcare insurance company. like all standardized medicare supplement insurance plans, it helps pick up some of what medicare doesn't pay. and could save you in out-of-pocket medical costs. to me, relationships matter. i've been with my doctor for 12 years. now i know i'll be able to stick with him.
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and learn more about the kinds of plans that will be here for you now -- and down the road. i have a lifetime of experience. so i know how important that is. syrian president, bashar al assad must go. that is a warning coming once again from secretary of state john kerry. >> because of the extraordinary
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havoc that he has reaped on his own country, on his own people, a man who has killed university students and doctors with scud missiles. a man who has gassed his own people in the dead of night, fami families sleeping, women, children, grandparents. a man who has unleashed extraordinary force of artillery and barrel bombs against civilians, against the laws of warfare. assad will never have or be able to earn back the legitimacy to bring that country back together. >> kerry was speaking this time at the world economic forum in davos, switzerland. he is attending the conference after participating in syrian peace negotiations that happened earlier this week. well, those talks started off with very bitter statement from both sides in the conflict. at one point, it appeared the talks would fail. but we are getting word, just now, that syrian officials and rebel leaders are going to meet face-to-face. want to bring in our nick
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robertson, joining us from those talks in geneva. nick, how did they work it out? >> reporter: that's not clear, suzanne. the u.n. special representative, who is meeting with both sides, met separately yesterday and today with both opposition and government delegations. but you know, both these delegations have been briefing on the side they wouldn't go face-to-face. they wouldn't get in the room with the other side unless certain conditions were met. and even syria's foreign minister said they would walk away from the talks if they didn't have face-to-face meetings saturday. now, he says the meetings are on, they'll meet saturday morning, sunday, as well. he said no one right now is leaving the talks. for him, that is an indication that he is at least getting this off to a slightly more hopeful start. as you say, people have been expecting. >> well, that's good. they're going to meet face-to-face, finally. we just heard from secretary of state, john kerry, again, saying
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that bashar al assad must go. is that the issue now, that these two sides are grappling with? is that the one sticking point, whether or not the syrian president will have any kind of role in an interim government? >> reporter: that is certainly a major issue for the opposition. they said they wouldn't have these meetings until they heard from the syrian government side, that that wasn't going to be the case. we don't know what's been said privately. but that is still a big issue. everything that is an issue here. they're so far apart, you know, on every issue. the government says terrorism is the -- the opposition terrorists. the opposition say the government is working with al qaeda inside syria right now. and look, one of the things they want to talk about here is getting more humanitarian aid into the country which will require cease fires either limited in area over time, whatever. but as ibrahimy says, they recognize people sitting at the
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table don't necessarily at all control the fighters on the ground. so even what they say at the table, can they even translate that to the ground. so there were so many issues, differences of opinion, one thing, and making what they say impact on the ground a wholly different thing again, suzanne. >> yeah. nic, at least they're meeting face-to-face. we'll see how that goes. got to keep them at the table talking to one another to try to sort out all of those issues. nic, thanks. appreciate it as always. coming up next, oh, rats. we are talking about rats. people in britain should be on the lookout for a very large ship drifting their way loaded with very creepy cargo. tdd#: 1-888-852-2134 there are trading opportunities tdd#: 1-888-852-2134 just waiting to be found. tdd#: 1-888-852-2134 at schwab, we're here to help tdd#: 1-888-852-2134 bring what inspires you tdd#: 1-888-852-2134 out there... in here. tdd#: 1-888-852-2134 out there, tdd#: 1-888-852-2134 there are stocks on the move.
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this is one heck of a story. a ghost ship rumored to be full of rats might be on a collision course with the british coastline. the former russian cruise ship has been drifting in the atlantic ever since it broke free from a tow rope that happened last january. rosie tompkins is in london with the story. >> reporter: rumors of a rat-infested abandoned ship drifting across the atlantic are causing widespread panic here in the u.k. that it could be headed
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for british shores. the russian-built vessel was under canadian control when it was cut adrift a year ago and is now believed to be floating at 8 kilometers an hour, covering 150 kilometers every day, while the rats on board are resume moumor have turned to cannibalism. cnn has turned to experts and despite these panic-inducing headlines, we are assured by our sources that neither the location, the direction or even the presence of rats on board can be confirmed at this time. so the u.k. needn't panic yet. back to you, suzanne. >> all right. we hope so. thank you. the egyptian desert has been holding a secret for more than 3,000 years. but now the secret is out. researchers from the university of pennsylvania discovered the tomb of a pharaoh that history had forgotten. pictures and writings from around 600 bc call him the king of upper and lower egypt. now all the gold had been taken from the tomb, but the bones and
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funeral masts were still there. historians now are having to rewrite ancient history to include him, and his dynasty. amazing. and the surf is up in half moon bay, california. now, this is way up. you want to check this out. look at the waves here. this is amazing. this is where the famous mavericks invitational surf competition is going to happen. look at that. surfers from all over the world, they're going to be there. organizers wait until the waves and the weather are just right, and apparently the time is now. surfers get only oh two days' notice to pack their bags and get to the beach. pretty cool. several stories caught our attention today. photos, as well. i want you to take a look at this. in ukraine, orthodox priests stepped into the line of fire to stop deadly protests. they bracved the bullets, walke between pro union protesters and the police on the other side. they carried bibles and chanted then those opposing sides. in afghanistan, children
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enjoyed themselves riding a ferris wheel near a cemetery in kabul. a person on the ground turns the wheel to make the kids move in the circle. thanks for watching "around the world." "cnn newsroom" starts right now. "cnn newsroom" starts right now. have a great weekend. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com right now, major changes in store for republicans in 2016. a short ended primary season in june. what will this mean for the candidates? right now, the former governor, bob mcdonnell, pleading not guilty, and leaving a virginia courtroom with a trial date and a stern warning from the judge. and right now, a message to u.s. olympic athletes about security. to stay safe, they need to tone down the red, white and blue. hello, i'm wolf blitzer, reporting from washington. republicans are shaking up the political cen

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